[it vs which] A fallacy is an idea that ... but (it/which) is false.

carelessman

New Member
Hello, everyone.

I bumped into a question that I thought it is a bit weird and better off without the choices, "it/which". Am I right? Thank you.

Q: A fallacy is an idea that a lot of people think is true but [it/which] is false. (Answer: which)

Original sentence:
Fallacies are statements that might sound reasonable or superficially true but are actually flawed or dishonest.
 
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  • carelessman

    New Member
    Your question is not clear. Are you asking whether "it" should be included?
    Thank you for your respond.

    Yes, I thought that "it" could also be an answer. If I see it as, "A fallacy is an idea that a lot of people think is true, but actually it(the idea) is false."

    And I thought in some sense “but” is redundant, since “which” already includes a conjuntion in itself.
     
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    carelessman

    New Member
    Oh. I thought for a long while, and I believe I figured it out. If anyone has different ideas, please let me know. Thank you.

    My conclusion is that 'A fallacy is an idea that a lot of people think is true but [without it or which] is false.' is the proper one.

    Since a fallacy is actually a wrong idea that people believe it is correct. Thus, if I put a comma, another relative pronoun or pronoun, that changes the meaning of a fallacy as, "a fallacy is a widespread wrong belief or idea, and the belief is wrong."

    However, I think the author wanted to say that 'a fallacy is actually a widespread wrong idea."

    Hence, my conclusion is the original sentence without 'it or which' is the proper one and the other variations are all change the meaning of fallacy a bit differently. What do you think?

    Thank you.
     
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    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Was this a test question in which you were given 'it' or 'which' as options for inserting into the sentence between 'but' and 'is false'?

    Were you given the option of not inserting anything?
     

    carelessman

    New Member
    Was this a test question in which you were given 'it' or 'which' as options for inserting into the sentence between 'but' and 'is false'?

    Were you given the option of not inserting anything?
    Was this a test question in which you were given 'it' or 'which' as options for inserting into the sentence between 'but' and 'is false'?
    Yes, test takers supposed to choose between it or which from the given option.

    Were you given the option of not inserting anything?
    No, I am not.
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    The answer is which because the context requires a relative pronoun.
    The sentence basically defines fallacy. It is an idea. This idea is made more specific by a double relative clause "that many people believe is true" but "that/which is false".
     

    carelessman

    New Member
    The answer is which because the context requires a relative pronoun.
    The sentence basically defines fallacy. It is an idea. This idea is made more specific by a double relative clause "that many people believe is true" but "that/which is false".
    Thank you, I think that/(which) can be an answer too.
    Then what if I change the that to it, or just omit them all, do you think it doesn't make sense?

    "A fallacy is an idea which many people believe to be true, but it(the idea) is in fact false because it is based on incorrect information or reasoning." Excerpted and from Collinsdictionary.com and changed which to it(the idea)
    "Fallacies are statements that might sound reasonable or superficially true but are actually flawed or dishonest."
    (Logical Fallacies Handlist)
    "What is a logical fallacy?  A statement that may sound reasonable or superficially true but is actually flawed or dishonest."
    (https://www.uwlax.edu/catl/lsp/obj/molinem/06_2008/TLF_logicalfallaciespresentation.pdf)
     
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    carelessman

    New Member
    What I really want to ask is actually the validity of the question.

    I think I read something like this from someone's blog.
    "I want to meet my girl friend and have a dinner." meaning I want to go for a dinner with my girl friend.
    "I want to meet my girl friend and to have a dinner." meaning I want to do two separate actions.

    So, I thought that may be "A fallacy is an idea that A but (without that or it) B" is a more closely related meaning than "A fallacy is an idea that A but which/it B".

    *Please, forgive me if I offended someone without my intention and if I am wrong, please correct me. Thank you.
     
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    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Was this a test question in which you were given 'it' or 'which' as options for inserting into the sentence between 'but' and 'is false'?
    Yes, test takers supposed to choose between it or which from the given option.
    As Edinburgher said, only 'which' is correct.

    It's a perfectly valid question, and 'which' is the only valid answer.


    The sentences you read on someone's blog are unrelated to this sentence/construction.
     
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